So…you peed on a stick, huh? Sure, there are some women out there who are super excited to see those two little pink lines, but maybe you’re not. Maybe you’re frantically scrolling through Google searches on “unplanned pregnancy” or “pregnancy options” or “plan B.” If that’s you, you probably already know that you have options. If you don’t, we’ll be sharing other posts to talk about those options, and for the time being, we’ll leave you to your Google searching. But if you already know your options, and you’re wondering about adoption, we want to share 3 things that might help to keep in mind, going forward.
- You can change your mind.
Many of the women we’ve worked with have had doubts about adoption– “can I go through with this?” “I don’t want to disappoint anyone.” “What if I change my mind?” All of those questions are normal and actually really good to work through on your own, with your loved ones, and with your caseworker. And any good adoption agency will tell you: you can change your mind at any time and no one will fault you for it.
Is it your first call? You can change your mind.
Signed into a program and been meeting with a counselor for 3 months? You can change your mind.
Matched with a family and talking about hospital plans? You can change your mind.
In the hospital bed with the baby down the hall? You can change your mind.
Even if you decide you want to parent and then realize that that’s not the option for you? You can change your mind then, too!
This is a hard decision. And once you’ve completed the process, it is permanent. So all the way up to that point, if you need to change your mind, do it. Any good agency will want you to make the best decision for you, and will have prepared their adoptive families for the possibility that you might decide not to complete the adoption process.
- You can choose.
Every adoption is different, and you can choose what you want it to look like. Do you feel like you really want to get to know the adoptive family? Do you prefer an open adoption where you can have contact with the family and your child as he grows up? Would you rather not know anything and just want someone to make all these decisions for you? All of those are valid options that you can choose. Some things to think about are:
- What kind of family would I like this baby to grow up with? Or do I want to know?
- What kind of contact do I want to have with the adoptive family, pre-birth?
- What kind of contact do I want to have with the adoptive family and the child, as she grows up?
- What do I want my hospital experience to look like? Who do I want there? Do I want to see or hold the baby, or will that be too hard?
Throughout the process, your adoption counselor will work with you to help you think through these decisions and make the plan that feels right for you.
- There will be hard moments.
Adoption carries some hard questions and painful emotions. There will be moments of regret, grief, guilt, and wondering what would have happened if you’d made a different choice. But women who choose parenting or abortion will have moments of regret, grief, guilt, and wondering as well. Questions are normal. Doubts are normal. Talk to your caseworker, talk to those who love you and support you. Let them help you work through the emotions that will come, and trust yourself that the decision you make will be the best one for you.
At the end of the day, you’re the one who will live this decision out. If you’re struggling with what to do and you’re even thinking about adoption as a possibility, it doesn’t hurt to ask. We’d love to talk with you about your story, work through the different options with you, and help you figure out what to do next. Our door is open. Give us a call.